"If Jesus Christ were amongst them, they would deceive him," it was said of the plunders, raiders, and outlaws who terrorized the Anglo-Scottish Border for over 300 years. Theirs is an almost forgotten chapter of British history, preserved largely in folktales and ballads. It is the story of the notorious raiding families--Armstrongs, Elliots, Grahams, Johnstones, Maxwells, Scotts, Kerrs, Nixons, and others--of the outlaw bands and broken men, and the fierce battles of English and Scottish armies across the Marches. The Steel Bonnets tells their true story in its historical context-- how the reivers ran their raids and operated their system of blackmail and terrorism, and how the March Wardens, enforcing the unique Border law, fought the great lawless community. A superb work of scholarship and a spellbinding narrative.
By George MacDonald Fraser (soft cover)